By Alice Tate-Harte
We are a small group of volunteers working to reduce pollution and promote active travel in SE23 and beyond. We last met in person back in 2020, before lockdown, but we’ve been busy since then! We are working with the Forest Hill Society Environment Committee on making a “Parklet” space in front of Forest Hill Station which will use plants to help screen pollution from the busy road.
There are now five School Streets, in our area, including Kilmorie, Dalmain, Eliot Bank, Kilmorie, Rathfern, and St William of York. In these schemes, access is restricted around the school roads at peak hours to reduce kids’ exposure to pollution. We need to work with parents and teachers from other schools on campaigning for more school streets.
Monitoring with the University of Cambridge helped us understand the problems of air pollution better and we responded to the consultation on Lewisham Council’s Air Quality Action Plan. We have worked with Mums for Lungs and Climate Action Lewisham to support the ULEZ, which is hoped to cut air pollution by 30% and we want to campaign for it to be expanded to benefit everyone in the area.
We have exciting plans for 2022, including involvement in Lewisham Borough of Culture.
We need more volunteers to grow the group so if you are passionate about the environment and have a few hours to spare, we have many ways you can help make our neighbourhood cleaner and greener. Please get in touch via
31 March 2022
By Alice Tate-Harte
25 March 2022
In March 2022, Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan came to Forest Hill to visit Forest Hill Secondary School and announced his proposal to extend the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) from the south and north circular roads to include all of Greater London.
Back in 2018, when the mayor was consulting about the ULEZ that came into effect in October 2021, at that time the Forest Hill Society responded to the consultation with one clear message: “Recognising the need for action to combat poor air quality, the Society would support a larger ULEZ, extending even to the full extent of Greater London.”
This proposal is particularly good news for South London and for Forest Hill. The south circular is much closer to the centre of London than the north circular. While the boundary in North London is a large duel-carriageway, the south circular is a more modest road that goes right through the heart of communities − as Forest Hill residents know only too well.
By extending the ULEZ to the whole of Greater London, there will be less pollution for miles beyond the South circular and this will hopefully have a positive impact on the health of local residents.
The proposed timescale is ‘end of 2023’, after which time drivers with more polluting vehicles will be charged £12.50 to drive anywhere in Great London – the same charge already applies to vehicles within the current ULEZ.
The Forest Hill Society welcomes this initiative and is delighted that the mayor chose Forest Hill as the place to launch this proposal.